Agrobiodiversity Activator


Arnab Gupta

Seed Systems Advisor

Wageningen Centre for Development Innovation

Agrobiodiversity Activator

Gisela Herrerías Guerra is President, Education Director and Co-Founder of Alternativas y Procesos de Participación Social A.C (Alternatives and Social Participation Processes), a community-based development organization focusing on ecological regeneration of watersheds, ecological agriculture, development finance, and development of social enterprises. Since 1980, Gisela and her husband Raúl Hernández Garciadiego have promoted sustainable regional development processes that benefit the poorest families and towns in the semi-arid region of the Mixteca, Mexico, with the support of an interdisciplinary team of around 200 people. As part of their work on ecological agriculture and amaranth production, Gisela and Raúl founded the Quali Cooperative Group, a vertically integrated agribusiness sourcing organic amaranth from 88 regional producer cooperative organizations, processing and producing nutritive amaranth food products. Quali supports 1,100 smallholder producers by providing a consistently above market average price for their harvest.

The work of Gisela and her team has been recognized internationally, receiving the Latin American and Caribbean Award for Water, the Slow Food Award for Defense of Biodiversity, and distinctions from the FAO and UNDP. Gisela has a degree in Pedagogy from the National Autonomous Mexico University (UNAM) and a Masters in Sciences of Enterprise Planning and Regional Development at the Oaxaca Institute of Technology.